Monday, February 25, 2013

Recipe for Make Ahead Chicken Parmesan

I am due any day with our fifth child, and this time around I wanted to make and freeze plenty of food in advance so we wouldn't be eating out as much after the baby is born.  I am aware that you can buy a variety of chicken already prepared in the frozen section of grocery stores, but I wanted ours to be healthy and homemade.  So, I developed this simple recipe for chicken Parmesan. We prepared and froze thirteen pounds of chicken.  It was used for the first time a couple nights ago.  Not only was it a hit for dinner that night, but my four year old wanted chicken for breakfast instead of cereal!  I had baked a double batch so we had plenty of leftovers.  I was curious as to how well it would reheat in the microwave the following day.  Cha-ching!  Just as good if not better.  Since this recipe was such a hit with our family, I am going to share it with you.

Make Ahead Chicken Parmesan:
Fresh (not frozen) chicken breasts - thin-sliced if you can find them
French bread - some grocery stores have a "day old" section where the price is reduced.  Day old is even better.
Shredded Parmesan cheese
Italian seasoning
Lowry's garlic salt with parsley
Eggs
2-gallon freezer Zip-Loc bags

Pasta sauce
Mozzarella or Italian blend shredded cheese
Italian seasoning

Prep day:
  1. In a large bowl, crack as many eggs as you have pounds of chicken.  Whisk.
  2. Thin slice your chicken breasts if they aren't already.  Place in the bowl with egg to soak.
  3. While the chicken is soaking, chop the French bread and send it through a food processor until crumbly.  Add Italian seasoning and Parmesan to food processor and give it a few extra pulses until mixed.  Spread bread crumbs out into a large cookie sheet.
  4. In a separate large cookie sheet lay out the chicken and sprinkle with garlic salt.  Flip.  Sprinkle garlic salt on the other side of the chicken pieces.
  5. Transfer the chicken to the bread crumbs and press down, flip, and press down again until the pieces are coated in bread crumbs.  Move the chicken back to the original cookie sheet.  That batch is ready to bake at 350º until cooked through.  Do not overbake.
  6. Repeat steps 4 and 5 until you have finished coating and baking all the chicken.
  7. Now it's time to freeze the pieces individually.  Don't be tempted to skip this step!  Lay the chicken out individually in bags, on foil, on a cookie sheet or whatever you have handy.  Freeze them for about 4 hours or until you can bag them without them sticking to each other.  After they are sufficiently frozen, load them into the giant Zip-Loc bags.  Press out as much air as possible then put them in your freezer until you are ready to eat them.
Dinner day:
  1. Place as many chicken pieces as you wish into a casserole dish.
  2. Pour pasta sauce over the top generously.
  3. Top with cheese.  Sprinkle with Italian seasoning.
  4. Bake at 350º for 30 minutes.



2 comments:

  1. Awesome Renae! Thank you so much for the recipe!

    ReplyDelete